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Incarcerated Interactions

A Theory-Driven Analysis of Applied Prison Communication


Edited By Erik D. Fritsvold and Jonathan M. Bowman

Incarcerated Interactions: A Theory-Driven Analysis of Applied Prison Communication is an innovative, applied edited book that uses core interdisciplinary social science theories to analyze and describe the social psychology and sociology of communicative interactions amongst incarcerated individuals. Beginning with the fundamentals of human interactions, this edited volume allows scholars across a variety of disciplines (such as criminology, sociology, communication studies, social psychology, anthropology, and economics) to become familiar with and apply the core principles and the requisite terminology of human communication within a criminological context. Each of the four sections of the text not only build upon the knowledge structures of previous chapters, but also function as stand-alone analyses and/or applications of extant scholarship within essential contexts. From a general discussion of core social science theory to the specific application of that theory in a range of scholarly contexts, this book addresses relevant issues such as mental illness and wellness, the gendered experience of inmates, recidivism rates, violence, the criminogenic effect of incarceration and the large-scale implications of prison gangs and their associated cultural influence, to name a few.

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3. Social Science Theory & Research: Jonathan M. Bowman


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3. Social Science Theory & Research


Social Science Theory

The lived human experience is diverse and varied, yet some core motivations and experiences common to all allow for comparative study and a broad understanding of social behavior. An inmate incarcerated in the modern American prison system (or most anywhere, for that matter) is likely to operate according to a variety of shared fundamental ways of understanding his or her world around him. Far from being a different “breed” of person as is so often portrayed in the media, the inmate has typically been socialized according to a variety of basic normative cognitive processes through which the vast majority of modern Americans have navigated their early lives, albeit with fundamental differences in some areas of social, cultural, and individual experience that may have led to the eventual participation in—or at the least getting caught in—some crime that was justly or unjustly ascribed to their personal experience.

While all authors in this text readily acknowledge the diversity of lived experiences across a variety of sociodemographic characteristics—indeed, the potential factors influencing the enculturation process is myriad and even approaching infinitely-nuanced—there are some foundational human processes of human communication and cognition that are relatively common across sociodemographic characteristics, such that the lived experience of an individual influences his or her behavior in ways similar to that of individuals with different backgrounds, even...

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